Where To Go On A Date When You've Been Together Forever
Where to go for date night when you've been together for so long that the sight of their socks on the floor isn't even annoying anymore.
When you’ve been with your partner for years, it can be hard to figure out what a date even is anymore. Should you revisit one of the spots where you first fell in love, or get all adventurous and eat somewhere you’ve never been? Bask in the glow of candlelight and make eyes at the person you brush your teeth next to every day, or get a slice of pizza and silence notifications from the babysitter for an hour? Whatever “date night” means to you, here are the best places to go on a date when you’re well past the honeymoon phase.
photo credit: Noah Devereaux
Yes, it’s hard to get a reservation at Four Horsemen, an exceptional wine bar in Williamsburg. But you’ve been together forever, so you can put in a little effort. Once you’re there, relax in the minimalist blonde wood interior, kick back with a bottle of pet nat, and order everything that sounds even vaguely appealing. The menu changes constantly, and we’ve never had a bad bite here. Good music is guaranteed, and you should plan to double up on dessert.
Located in the old Breslin space in the Ace Hotel, Koloman takes the kind of food you’d expect to find at a fancy hotel in Europe, gives it a 21st-century makeover, and then serves it all up in a surprisingly casual setting. A meal here strikes the perfect balance between comforting and decadent, which is exactly how you want to feel on a special date night. Order the Brune Landaise, a flawless roast chicken for two with spatzle and cabbage, and a handful of smaller plates.
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photo credit: David A. Lee
Semma serves South Indian regional specialties typically made in rural home settings, and they do so in a narrow space with quintessential wooden-table West Village charm. It’s romantic in an understated way, and you won’t feel like you’re trying too hard to impress the person who already lives with you. All of the food here is great, but we especially love the vat of tender venison drenched in a dark brown gravy that tastes like clove and smoke, as well as the Goanese oxtail made with ample amounts (i.e., just enough) green cardamom and cumin.
If you’re ever looking to eat food inspired by popular dishes from around the world without having to step into a Cheesecake Factory, Lore is the restaurant for you. This Park Slope restaurant serves a menu that has both a dosa and wild mushroom lasagna on it, and they actually pull it off. You’ll eat in a classy-but-casual space with nice hand soap and globally inspired interior design that manages to avoid looking like something thrown together after a trip to Pier 1. Come here if you live in Park Slope and want to feel like you’re in a chic Manhattan restaurant without having to get on the subway.
Claud’s interior, with its off-beige walls, natural wood accents, and minimalist lighting fixtures, feels like an expensive apartment in the East Village, giving the whole restaurant the air of an exclusive house party. The food swings between references to classic continental dishes and delicious takes on the same things everyone else who’s getting their produce from the Hudson Valley is making. You’ll see dishes like blistered Jimmy Nardello peppers in early September, as well as nods to classic European dishes that don’t resort to predictable remixes. This is the perfect choice for date nights when you want to remind your partner that you still know all the coolest restaurants in NYC.
The breakfast date is highly underrated, but longtime couples know that sometimes true romance happens in the morning. Come here before 11:30 to sip kaffe kremes, eat kaiserschmarren, and feel like you’re on a cafe crawl through Vienna. This restaurant is inside of an art museum and across the street from Central Park, so the itinerary for the rest of your day date pretty much writes itself.
Taverna Kyclades is one of Astoria’s best-loved Greek restaurants for a good reason. Between the consistently excellent food and cozy, low-key atmosphere, we’ve never had a bad experience here. Seafood is the specialty, and your order should be built around whatever whole fish sounds best with a side (or two) of tart, melt-in-your-mouth lemon potatoes. It offers all the warm, fuzzy feelings of having dinner at your parents’ house without having to deal with anyone’s in-laws.
photo credit: David A. Lee
This Bed-Stuy place serves a four-course, prix-fixe meal twice nightly in a room off of Nostrand Avenue. The space has the energy of a cool gallery opening, only the attendees here don't have daddies and personal connections to the Getty family. Or maybe they do. But they're not insufferable about it. Dept. Of Culture can only fit about 15 diners per seating, most of whom commune at a wooden table next to framed photos of the owner’s grandparents. This place it BYOB, so if you have a favorite wine, bring along a bottle. It’s the perfect way to get out of a date night rut.
Lord’s is a modern British bistro from the team behind Dame, so it should come as no surprise that you’ll find a menu filled with excellent takes on classic fare like scotch eggs and pig’s head terrine. There’s also a rotating daily meat pie for two, which we think is the perfect longtime couple meal. The space feels like a cross between a Hogwarts professor’s office and a trendy bar, so it’s low-key enough that you don’t have to get dressed up while still feeling special.
Lavaux Wine Bar
A fondue date is cheesy in more than one sense, and sometimes that’s exactly what a married couple needs. Leave your cynicism at the door and try to book the extremely cute window table inside of a gondola, then eat all the bread, cheese, and Swiss wine you can handle. Even if this sounds like a silly idea at first, we promise you’ll lose your inhibitions after they refill your bread basket a few times.